Eunan O’Kane has suffered a major setback in his career.
The Irishman was a popular fixture at Leeds United before the arrival of new manager Marcelo Bielsa, who didn’t give the player so much as a squad number, let alone match time.
After an intervention from Ireland boss Martin O’Neill, warning O’Kane that he needed games in order to feature in the Euro 2020 qualification attempt, the midfielder made a deadline day loan move down to League One Luton Town until the New Year.
O’Kane then featured in all four games for Luton since, but the latest of those heralded a crushing blow.
The 28-year-old was only on the pitch for six minutes having come on in the 75th, when a challenge for the ball went badly wrong.
81' O'Kane goes in for a challenge as the Hatters look to counter, and he comes off badly. Stretcher is called immediately. LT 1-0 BR #COYH
— @LutonTown (@LutonTown) September 15, 2018
Some minutes later he was stretchered off amid fears of a broken leg.
The club have since released a statement, confirming that O’Kane has fractured both his tibia and fibula in his left leg. While not a complete leg break as initially feared, the severity of the injury, that will require surgery, means that his loan spell at the club has come to an end.
“We can confirm that on-loan midfielder Eunan O’Kane suffered a fractured tibia and fibula in his left leg during the second half of the Hatters’ 1-0 home win over Bristol Rovers yesterday,” a statement via Luton Town said.
“The 28-year-old Republic of Ireland international received first class care from medical staff both at Kenilworth Road and the Luton & Dunstable Hospital last night, and we thank everyone involved for playing their part.
He will undergo surgery at the L&D today before returning to his parent club Leeds United for his rehabilitation following his release.
We would like to wish Eunan a speedy recovery and thank him for his efforts during his brief spell at the club, during which he has made a big impression on everyone he has met at Kenilworth Road.”